On June 21, the Hotchkiss Marshal's Office responded to an address in Hotchkiss for a report of a domestic disturbance. When officers arrived they learned the male suspect, identified as Jimmy Jones, age 33, had left the scene. Hotchkiss officers sent out an attempt to locate Jones and the vehicle in which he was last seen, a white 1995 Jeep Cherokee.
At approximately 4:21 p.m., a Colorado State Patrol trooper observed the white Jeep broken down on the side of the road on Highway 92 approximately one mile outside of Hotchkiss. As the trooper stopped to contact Jones, he barricaded himself in the vehicle. The Hotchkiss Marshal's Office learned Jones has a lengthy criminal history including violence toward law enforcement, and was considered possibly armed and dangerous.
The CSP trooper was quickly assisted by the Delta County Sheriff's Office, additional Colorado State Patrol, Paonia Police Department and Gunnison County Sheriff's Office. Numerous attempts to get Mr. Jones to exit his vehicle were made but he refused and provoked law enforcement.
Highway 92 in and out of Hotchkiss was closed down for approximately three hours. Vehicles were diverted away from the highway until the situation was over.
The Montrose County Sheriff's Office Special Response Team (SRT) was requested to respond and assist with this potentially volatile situation. Montrose County responded with the SRT bearcat, an armored vehicle utilized by the SRT team to enable the team to approach dangerous situations and limiting the exposure to the team.
After several failed attempts to verbally request Jones to exit the vehicle, the SRT team introduced CS gas through a broken rear window. After a short time of exposure to the CS gas Jones exited his vehicle and was arrested without injury. At approximately 8:20 p.m. Highway 92 was reopened and Jones was transported to the Delta County Jail on numerous criminal charges.
The election results are in at the local, state and national level, and as expected, Democrats are doing well in state and national races. Colorado has elected Jared Polis as governor; nationally the Republicans appear to retain control of the Senate while Democrats now control the House of Representative.
With a ballot full of local and state measures, voter turnout in Delta County topped 71%, with 15,889 ballots cast. Statewide, voter turnout was just over 52%.
Of the three Delta County residents seeking state offices, Matt Soper won over Thea Chase in State Representative Dist. 54; Mike Mason lost to Julie McCluskie in State Representative Dist. 61; and Olen Lund lost to Kerry Donovan in State Senate Dist. 5.
Locally, in the City of Delta voters rejected a .5% sales tax increase to fund recreation, as well as recreational marijuana sales. The sale of medical marijuana and cultivation/manufacturing facilities was approved by a slim margin. Delta voters also gave the city the green light to move forward with selling or trading the Cottonwood and Riverbend Park, and to sell the old Municipal Light and Power Building.